Thomas Crafford / Crafurt / Crawford

I have Crawford’s on both sides of my family tree. They are different Crawford’s, one branch is from Georgia, with the earliest well proven ancestor having been born in NC in 1774. The other is from Mississippi, with the earliest, well proven ancestor born in Virginia in 1784. The latter, Thomas Crawford born in Virgnia in 1784, is the subject of my post.
These Crawford’s are my maternal Crawford line, via my Great-grandmother, Nancy Catherine Crawford. Nancy Catherine Crawford was the daughter of George W. Crawford and Jane Mangum Crawford. George W. Crawford, we think his middle name was probably Washington, was born in North (most likely) or South Carolina between 1810 and 1813. The reason we are uncertain of his birth place is that he states it variously as North or South Carolina in the censuses in which he is found. According to family researchers, George died in Clarksville, Johnson County, Arkansas, certainly after the 1880 census.
In 1880, there are two George Crawford’s born about 1813, give or take 10 years, in Polk County, Arkansas. My ancestor is in Cove township, listed as G. W. Another George Crawford is enumerated in District 131, Mountain, Polk, Arkansas. The “other” George is stated as having been born in Tennessee, and is enumerated with daughter Sarah, 20, born in Tennessee, and sons Benjamin,17, and James, 13, both born in Arkansas. “My” George, is listed as 67 years of age, born in NC, enumerated with wife Jane, 54, born in Alabama, daughter Mary J., 21, sons William D., 15, and George W., 13 and grandaughter, Frances Boling, 12, all of whom were born in Mississippi.
Frances Boling presents her own set of mysteries. Simply stated, it is unlikely that Frances is a grandaughter as she can be found in the 1870 census living in the household of John T. Boling, with other siblings, George, Elizabeth, Jackson, Thomas, Jane and Nancy. Backing up to the 1860 census, to find the name of Frances’s mother, we find the John T Bolund family living next door to the James Crawford Family, in Itawamba County, MS, with presumed wife Nancy, born in 1827, in South Carolina, still living. Other household members are George W., 7, Rachel E., 5, Isabella M.C., 4, Daniel J., 3,and Thomas J. 1/12. Nancy can’t be a daughter of George and Jane, George would have been about 14-17 at her birth, Jane would have been about 3 when this Nancy was born. Certainly, had this Nancy been a child of George alone, there would have been some evidence of that by now,. It is unlikely that John T and Nancy were just good friends of the Crawfords and, once both had died, Frances went to live with them, moving with them to Arkansas, as other family members of Frances would likely have objected. More likely, Nancy is somehow connected to the Crawford family, possibly a sister to George, at the very least she is somehow connected to the Crawfords.
Our George is found with his family in Itawamba County, Mississippi in censuses prior to 1880, the 1850, 1860 and 1870 censuses find them there. In 1850, he states that he was born in North Carolina. He is 40 years old and has a land value of $150. He is listed with wife Jane (Mangum) Crawford, Amanda F, 8, Thomas J., 5, John C., 3 and my great-grandmother, Nancy C., 8/12. The next family is Thomas Crawford, aged 65, born in Virginia, with son James, 26, born in SC. After Thomas, the next family is Jacob Johnson, wife Catherine Crawford Johnson, 43, born in North Carolina, and their family. At the top of this page is Moses Crawford, born in South Carolina, brother to Catherine, James and George.
In 1840, Thomas Crafford is listed in Pickens County, AL with 1 male 15-19, 1 male 20-29, 1 male 20-39, 1 male 50-59 and two females, one aged 15-19 and one aged 40-49. These ages align nicely with George, Moses, James and Thomas for the males. Catherine Crawford Johnson and Meeky Crawford Evans were married and living nearby, as is Miranda Crawford Hancock. The young woman in the household is most likely Frances Crawford Griffin. The female aged 40-49 was likely his wife and she died after 1840 in Pickens County, Alabama. As there is an Evans family connection and George and Crawford were born in North Carolina, there is some speculation as to whether or not the marriage record for Thomas Crawford and Unica Evans is for this Thomas. Thomas Crawford of Itawamba County, Mississippi.
I have seen some researchers suggest that “my” Thomas was married to Priscilla Barnett and was the son of Samuel Crawford and Nancy Forgey. Most researchers indicate that the Thomas Crawford, who was married to Priscilla, was born in 1788 in Tennessee or South Carolina and died in McMinn County, Tennessee in 1839. He certainly wasn’t alive in Itawamba County, MS in 1850 if he died in 1839 in Tennessee! Thomas of Itawamba County was born in Virginia in 1785. Although it is possible that there was a divorce, there is no evidence or record or family tradition of a divorce; also, he is enumerated in Alabama in 1840, with a woman of the right age as a wife in the family group. Priscilla is enumerated in Polk County, TN in 1840. Names are repeated in the Mississippi Crawfords with frequency. We see repetitions of the names Rachel, Nancy, Frances, George W., James, Thomas Jefferson, but nothing of Priscilla, Barnett, Agatha, William, etc. From this evidence, Thomas Crawford of Itawamba County, MS can’t be connected to Samuel Crawford and Nancy Forgey.


9 Comments to “Thomas Crafford / Crafurt / Crawford”

  1. Hi Paula,
    I think you have it right on with your article above. This week I have been at the South Carolina archives digging for information on my Griffin, Crawford, Hancock lines and I found something very, very interesting on Thomas Crawford.

    If you read the notes on the marriage of Thomas Crawford to Unica Evans in Surry Co. NC, you will see that William Graham gave consent for his daughter Unica Evans to marry Thomas Crawford. Was it a step-daughter? I assume he gave consent because she was a minor not because she had been married previously. I started searching the Grahams and Crawfords and found John Graham on the census next to Thomas Crawford on the 1820 Pendleton SC census. The children on the census fit Thomas having Catherine and George.

    On the 1860 Itawamba MS census, you will see Wesley Graham a few names below Thomas Crawford, right in there with all the family.

    Add to all this the Evans relationships and it seems to me that Thomas Crawford and Unica Evans were in fact our ancestors.

    So why weren’t there any children named after Unica? Have you researched Pickens Co. death records for her?
    After 15 years of researching, I think I might be close to a breakthrough.

    My line is: Rachel Griffin’s son, Archibald Griffin who married Frances Adaline Hancock, daughter of Miranda Crawford, daughter of Thomas.

    • Great work, Marilyn! Your comment made me double back to take a look at the Crawford’s for another search on Thomas & Unica on So exciting that you are getting to visit the Archives!
      I found two records on Ancestry,com, for Thomas Crawford and Unica Evans, one apparently from a book, which includes the name of the bondsman, Jacob Eastrap in addition to the consent from William Grayham, “for his daughter Unica Evans”. This record is from the book by Holcomb: Holcomb, Brent H. Marriages of Surry County, North Carolina 1779-1868. The abbreviation “bm”, in the listing, appears to stand for bondsman, not Baptist Minister.
      The other just has her father’s name, not the bondsman. Don’t know if they actually acted on the bond and married, though.
      I agree, it does seem odd that no one was named for her, but I do see Rachael/Rachel with frequency, maybe her name included Rachel, and she went by that name rather than her first name. Who knows?
      Do they have the microfilm of the records at the South Carolina Archives?

      • Paula,

        I am currently in North Carolina and spent some time Saturday at the archives. They had the ORIGINAL marriage bond for Thomas and Unica along with the original statement of William Graham. This is how the consent reads:

        For this will certify that I have no objection to my daughter Unica Evans joining Thos Crafford in wedlock — given under my hand this 4th day of July 1807.

        William x [his mark] Grayham.

        Test: J.W. Kelly
        To Col. Joseph Williams

        Thomas Crawford signed his own name on the marriage bond as did Jacob Eastep. It was so exciting to hold it and to know he was literate enough to sign his name. My sister was with me and had never done genealogy before. She was excited about it too.

        The fact the statement seems to be addressed to Col Joseph Williams may indicate Thomas was in the military. Could it have been a military wedding? Williams was a famous Rev. War leader and must have been still serving. I suspect it had to do with Indian skirmishes.

        I have been intensely researching the Graham and Evans lines and have not found anything yet to tie this together. I have also looked into Jacob Eastep being a relative of some type. He was born 1779 and married Ruth Crockett in Surry Co. I found his lineage and he has a daughter named Eunice.

        Tomorrow, Monday 6/6/11, I am actually going to Mt. Airy, the county seat of Surry Co. In case you didn’t know, and I didn’t, Mt. Airy is Andy Griffith’s hometown and is the town Mayberry is patterned after. We wanted to see Mayberry and it gives me a perfect opportunity to look into county records a little more.

        This is so exciting after so many years of a brick wall.

  2. Paula, I found a deed in Surry Co showing Thomas Crawford purchased land in Dec. 1807 and sold it in Dec 1808. I don’t think he was in Surry Co. very long. A courthouse search and library search found only the deed.

    On to the next county…

  3. Marilyn, You are making great strides! Pickens County, AL and Itawamba County, MS are both counties with data loss. I received a book with some information take from Newspapers for both those counties, but nothing with a Crawford female at the appropriate time. Found some info on others potentially connected to our line, Griffin, Hancock, Evans, etc.

  4. Marilyn,
    Have you been able to find a probate record for William Graham?

    • Paula, I am still researching William Graham and the Evans link, but so far, nothing new has been found. North Carolina and South Carolina state archives are on line, and I have been digging through those records, too. If I find anything else, I will let you know. By the way, Mt. Airy is not the county seat of Surry Co. It is another town 5 miles south of there, which I have already forgotten the name. They had a nice genealogy library, but I didn’t find anything helpful. At least we have a couple of new names to work off of.

  5. Paula, can you give me the reference for Thomas Crawford on the 1840 Pickens Co. census? I have been unable to find him there as head of household.

  6. He is on stamped page 337(A), Ancestry image 65 of 106 as Thos. Crafford. Ancestry’s search won’t find it using his full name of Thomas, even using a Soundex search.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: